THE INTER-AMERICAN DEVELOPMENT BANK AND PESTICIDES AND TOXIC CHEMICALS LABORATORY (PTCL)
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) through its Agriculture Export Diversification Programme under the component aimed at strengthening and consolidating agriculture health and food safety services in Guyana has allocated funding for the development of the PTCL. The PTCL intends to use this money to enhance both its quality and residual analyses capabilities. The desired equipment and materials were already presented to the programme's executing agency and the process of procurement has begun.
One of the major pieces of equipment to be acquired is a High Performance Liquid Chromatograph (HPLC), which would be used to identify and quantify pesticide residues. It is a very powerful analytical tool that is able to detect very small concentrations and a wide variety of chemical compounds. This would be important not only to safeguard consumer health but also to facilitate the trade requirements of export markets.
The PTCL is also procuring a generator with the available funds to ensure a constant supply of electricity. This is vital to the operation of the laboratory and especially important for protecting the integrity of the samples and facilitating uncompromised analyses of these samples.
Among the smaller pieces of equipment expected are the canopy and deioniser. The canopy is a safety device that reduces the hazards posed by the chemicals emitted during the operation of the Gas Chromatograph. While the de-ioniser will ensure that there is a constant supply of laboratory grade water which is essential to all analyses. The PTCL is most grateful to the IDB for the funding available to build its capacity. We will be better able to assist with protecting the health of consumers and the development of agriculture in Guyana, thereby playing a role in the sustained growth of the country's economy.